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The perfect combination of airy, soft, and chewy, you NEED this homemade fry bread in your life! It’s so versatile. You can enjoy it as-is, or use it as a canvas for all kinds of tasty sweet and savory creations.
My favorite way to enjoy fry bread is with a little cinnamon honey butter, but it’s also great as a base for Navajo tacos! Whether you’re craving something sweet or savory, fry bread does it all!
Navajo Fry Bread
If you’ve never tried it before, fry bread is a tasty food tradition from Native American communities, especially the Navajo. It’s super easy to whip up at home with just flour, baking powder, salt, water, and oil for frying. You flatten the dough and cook it until it’s crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. When they’re being fried, they puff up and become deliciously light and airy. You’re in for a treat!
I love fry bread so much. Not only is it super simple to make, but you can enjoy it in lots of different ways! Craving something sweet? Give it a dusting of powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar. It’s also great served with honey butter or caramel sauce. And if you’re wanting something savory, load ’em up with taco fixings, pulled pork, sloppy joe meat, buffalo chicken, the options are endless. Let’s take a look at the ingredients that make this iconic Native American recipe!
Fry Bread Ingredients
As if you needed any more reasons to make this tasty bread, it uses the most simple ingredients. So simple, you probably have them all in your pantry right now! (Exact measurements are in the recipe card below.)
- All-Purpose Flour: This is your go-to dough maker. It’s the main ingredient that gives fry bread its structure and chewy goodness.
- Baking Powder: Makes your fry bread all fluffy and light, like a delicious cloud.
- Salt: The flavor booster! Salt adds that extra oomph to your fry bread and keeps it from tasting bland. Even if you’re going to use sweet toppings, don’t skip the pinch of salt.
- Hot Water: Turns the ingredients into a smooth dough.
- Vegetable Oil for Frying: This oil is what turns your fry bread dough into crispy, golden deliciousness.
Homemade Fry Bread Recipe
Grab those ingredients and let’s make some tasty homemade bread! Even though the bread is fried in oil, don’t let that intimidate you. The process is super straightforward and you’ll end up with light, fluffy bread each and every time!
- Dry Ingredients: In the bowl of a stand mixer add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Then whisk by hand to combine.
- Add Water: Pour half the water into the bowl and using a dough hook, mix the dough on medium speed, gradually add more of the water until all the water has been added.
- Rest: Once everything has come together and the dough is smooth, remove it from the mixing bowl and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover and let the dough rest 45 minutes to an hour.
- Shape: When the dough has rested, divide it all into 2 inch rounds. Place the rounds on a floured surface and roll them all out about ⅛ to ¼ inch thick. You can either roll them with a rolling pin or flatten and stretch them using your hands.
- Fry: Add the vegetable oil to a skillet and heat it up over medium high heat. When the oil is ready, begin frying the frybread one bread at a time by carefully placing them in the oil, frying for 2-3 minutes per side.
- Remove Excess Oil: The bread should puff up and be a golden brown color. When they are done, remove them from the oil and place them on a paper towel lined plate to soak up any excess oil.
- Enjoy: Allow them to rest a little before serving.
Don’t Overwork Your Dough!
Be gentle when handling the dough. Overworking it can lead to tough bread. (And we want it light and soft!) Just knead it enough to bring the ingredients together.
Can Fry Bread Be Made in an Air Fryer?
Yes! Just keep in mind that it won’t end up quite as golden and crispy. Work in small batches. Add your dough to your air fryer basket and spray with cooking spray. Cook for 10 minutes at degrees Fahrenheit, flipping halfway.
Here are a few simple ways to make sure your fry bread turns out perfectly!
- Make sure your dough is hot enough (around 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit) before adding the dough. You can test it by dropping a small piece of dough into the oil; it should sizzle and bubble.
- Fry in Small Batches: Avoid overcrowding the frying pan. Fry one or two pieces of dough at a time to ensure they cook evenly.
- Drain Excess Oil: After frying, place the cooked fry bread on paper towels to absorb any excess oil. No one likes soggy fry bread!
Fry Bread Topping Ideas
- Navajo Tacos: Top fry bread with seasoned ground beef, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, cheese, and a dollop of sour cream for a delicious Navajo taco.
- Powdered Sugar and Honey: Sprinkle warm fry bread with powdered sugar and drizzle honey over it for a sweet and simple treat.
- Fruit and Whipped Cream: Serve fry bread with fresh fruits like strawberries, blueberries, and sliced bananas, topped with a generous dollop of whipped cream. It doubles as a tasty breakfast!
- Biscuits and Gravy: Pour creamy sausage gravy over your fried bread for a southern-inspired dish with a twist.
As long as it’s in an airtight container or wrapped tightly with plastic wrap, fry bread will stay good at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Can Fry Bread Dough Be Frozen?
Yes! Shape into balls, wrap with parchment paper to keep them from sticking to each other, place in a freezer bag, and freeze for 1-2 months. When you’re ready to use it, thaw overnight and then bake as directed.
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In the bowl of a stand mixer add the flour, baking powder, and salt whisk by hand to combine.
Pour half the water into the bowl and using a dough hook, mix the dough on medium speed, gradually add more of the water until all the water has been added.
Once everything has come together and the dough is smooth, remove it from the mixing bowl and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover and let the dough rest 45 minutes to an hour.
When the dough has rested, divide it all into 2 inch rounds. Place the rounds on a floured surface and roll them all out about ⅛ to ¼ inch thick. You can either roll them with a rolling pin or flatten and stretch them using your hands.
Add the vegetable oil to a skillet and heat it up over medium high heat. When the oil is ready, begin frying the frybread one bread at a time by carefully placing them in the oil, frying for 2-3 minutes per side.
The fry bread should puff up and be a golden brown color. When they are done, remove them from the oil and place them on a paper towel lined plate to soak up any excess oil.
Allow them to rest a little before serving.
You can store leftovers at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days, although these are really best enjoyed fresh!
Calories: 215kcalCarbohydrates: 46gProtein: 6gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.05gSodium: 506mgPotassium: 408mgFiber: 2gSugar: 0.2gCalcium: 160mgIron: 3mg
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.